Playing a game of political chicken with state employee paychecks

On Friday, a judge ruled California State Controller John Chiang can delay the temporary pay cut ordered by Gov. Schwarzenegger. Unfortunately, both sides are playing cynical political games with state workers’ paychecks.

Chiang is refusing to pay anything to those appointed by the governor or legislature, while Schwarzenegger exempted from pay cuts those unions who had recently made a deal with him. Regardless of where you stand on this issue, the pay of workers should not be subject to being cut or eliminated temporarily just to score political points or for political payback.

State workers are not the reason a budget hasn’t passed. If anyone’s pay should be cut, it should be those in the legislature who still have not passed a budget even though the state constitution mandates it be passed by June 15. Instead, in a fit of irresponsibility and pique, they simply went home.

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